The annual International Youth Bible Contest was held on Thursday at the Jerusalem Theater.
Elkana Friedman, a 14-year old student at the Bnei Tzvi Yeshiva in Beit El took first place, while Tehilla Mattes, a resident of Rehovot and student at Ulpanat HaRav Baharan, took second.
Elkana’s father, Rabbi Aharon Friedman, teaches at the Kerem BeYavne Yeshiva. Elkana’s mother teaches at Ulpanat HaRav Baharan, the alma mater of the runner-up.
A total of 16 participants from 8 countries took part.
This year’s theme is “Israeli Unity”.
Friedman spoke with Arutz Sheva after his victory.
“With God’s help I made it here. I get such great satisfaction from learning the Bible, and from this moving event in Jerusalem. Even after winning this prize, I’m going to continue studying the Bible, and I want to thank all of my family for supporting me, and thank the staff of the yeshiva for helping me reach this point.”
Education Minister Naftali Bennett (Jewish Home) spoke at the event, emphasizing the central role the Bible continues to play for the Jewish nation.
“The Bible was and still is the foundation of our national identity. It’s the source of our [national] life, it’s the source of our moral and social inspiration, and the basis of our right to fight for our survival here in the Land of Israel.”